Google Exec Likens Company to ‘Illicit Businesses’

The public is finally able to see an "embarrassing" document from its antitrust trial that speaks volumes about the company's mindset....
Google Exec Likens Company to ‘Illicit Businesses’
Written by Matt Milano
  • The public is finally able to see an “embarrassing” document from its antitrust trial that speaks volumes about the company’s mindset.

    Google has been working to keep documents out of the public record and keep some of the trial proceedings private out of fear of how the company will be portrayed. The DOJ has released one of the most “embarrassing” documents, labeled such by Judge Amit Mehta.

    According to Bloomberg, by way of Ars Technica, the document was part of meeting notes created by Michael Roszak, Google’s VP of Finance.

    Search advertising is one of the world’s greatest business models ever created — maybe Windows is on that same level as Christian and I discussed at dinner & there are certainly illicit businesses (cigarettes or drugs) that could rival these economics, but we are fortunate to have an amazing business.

    Roszak’s notes also discuss Google’s unique position and its ability to ignore “the fundamental laws of economics,” implying that once users are hooked on search, the company only needs to focus on supplying that service.

    Part of what has been so amazing about that is that we’ve essentially been able to ignore one of the fundamental laws of economics — businesses need to worry about supply and demand.

    When talking about revenue, we could mostly ignore the demand side of the equation (users and queries) and only focus on the supply side of advertisers, ad formats, and sales.

    Judge Mehta overruled Google’s objections, finding that the notes did not contain anything confidential.

    “This doesn’t contain anything confidential,” Judge Mehta told Google. “I understand it’s somewhat embarrassing for the witness.”

    The revelation illustrates the uphill battle Google faces, making its case that it is not an illegal monopoly.

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